Our staff anxiously anticipates the 2017 lake management season. We’ve serviced the electrofishing boat, fish hauling trailer, and related equipment. Hope these tips contribute to a memorable year at your pond.
Does your lake have a flood control pipe? Is it corrugated pipe? Are you seeing rusted areas? If the answer is yes, call your dirt contractor immediately and schedule an inspection. He’ll examine the system in-front and behind the dam. Early detection can save devastating consequences. Some old pipes can be sealed before blowing-out. It may require constructing a new spillway, but it’s better than losing the dam, the lake, and fish.
Our colleague, Mike Otto, recommends checking overflow pipes monthly, particularly if the pond is carrying above-average runoff. He suggests not using corrugated metal pipe in a dam. There are other options. Repairing damaged pipe is a tedious job. Work is demanding, often in extremely close quarters, and a race against the clock to save the lake. “Once water exercises its power through movement”, Mike explained, “there is just no simple way to block it until Mother Nature finishes showing us who’s boss”.
Aeration is one of the greatest improvements you can make to a pond. It increases productivity and provides durable service. However, compressors must be maintained to sustain a valuable lifeline to the fishery and water quality. Bottom diffuser systems are designed for low-maintenance and typically require minimal service. Disconnect power before opening the cabinet. See the owner’s manual for approved procedures to clean or replace compressor air filters and piston cups. Regularly flex air stations. Enhance ventilation by keeping cabinet air inlets and outlets free of debris and weed growth. Delayed response may result in significant damage. If the size and appearance of bubble action on the surface has decreased since installation, perform general cabinet cleaning and replace air filters. Also check the date of your last air station flexing. Aeration is highly beneficial, especially if you feed fish in small ponds. Call for a quote on maintenance of existing units or installation of a new system.
Complete this important check list:
- Finalize a plan to achieve 2017 management goals.
- Look for seeps (wet ground) behind the dam.
- Walk the shoreline. Watch for beaver or otter trails into the lake.
- Order tilapia for algae control, plus crawfish and threadfin shad for bass forage.
- Clear flood-control pipes and spillways to ensure efficient drainage.
- Replace weak steps and boards on dock decks.
- Test feeder batteries and solar chargers.
- Evaluate fish habitat and replenish as needed.
- Monitor early vegetation development to nip in the bud.
- Maintain a 2017 calendar recording rainfall, water level fluctuations, fish harvest, angling catch rates, varmint sightings, water quality readings, and observations that help make informed management decisions.
- Test boat batteries and chargers.
- Schedule spring and/or fall lake surveys.
Please call if you have questions or need assistance on above items.